Genre: Fun, Shounen, Sci-fi/fantasy
Length: 120 episodes and ongoing
Score: Good

Just before the Meiji Restoration, when the Emperor and his supporters were preparing to take control of the country back from the Shogunate, Japan was invaded by aliens. Twenty years later, life in Edo has settled down: people sharing with aliens, traditional style food, clothing and buildings sharing with space-age technology (and everything in between). Gintoki and his cohorts are a bunch of low-life wannabe heroes who’ll do anything to pay the rent and pick up the next issue of Jump. Throw in the Shinsengumi, earth separatists, ninjas, inexplicable giant pets and the occasional robot and the 1880s have never been so hectic.

A very silly story, but quite well executed. The juxtaposition of old, new and alien is actually just an exaggeration of life in modern Japan. The aliens look like an old episode of star trek – like actors with antennae glued on – so you know this isn’t a series that will ever take itself too seriously. The main gang are reminiscent of Cowboy Bebop in their do-anything role, but the show is much faster and doesn’t waste time on things like plot.